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BOE to vote on final FY14 budget

JONESBORO — The Clayton County Board of Education work session agenda for Monday includes the final adoption of the fiscal year 2014 budget.

The tentative budgets total $532 million, which includes general operations, capital projects and federal programs. The $352 million for general operations includes a one-time, 1-percent bonus for all district employees.

Superintendent Luvenia Jackson recommended the bonus this past spring, after school officials announced the board would see more than $11 million in unexpected revenues.

Business services director Lonita Collier said the district did not anticipate the additional revenues during its preliminary budget planning process.

She reported a $2 million surplus in FY13 revenues due to mid-year cutbacks along with an expected $1 million adjustment to the state’s quality basic education formula and an $8.8 million increase in equalization grant funding.

Collier said applying bonuses would hasten the board to deficit spending next year and in the years to follow. But having excess revenues for FY14 without bonuses would do little to stave off deficits in the long term.

School boards have been challenged in the budget-balancing process over the past several years because of scanty revenues from declining local and state tax collections.

The board is also expected to review several policy amendments Monday.

The policies pertain to board operations, school administration, fiscal management, business management and management oversight.

The board plans to have progress reports on financing and purchasing, personnel changes, SPLOST IV revenue collections and school construction.

The first meeting of FY14 is July 8. It is set to begin at 6 p.m. in the board room, 1058 Fifth Ave. in Jonesboro.